The story of the Tower of Babel in Genesis chapter 11 is a historical narrative of the first recorded form of government gone awry. The apostle Paul wrote, “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come” (I Corinthians 10:11).

What are some of the principles in this account that forewarn us of the corruption of governments and their ultimate end?

First, beware of charismatic leadership that unifies the masses in rebellion to God. The Bible says Nimrod was “a mighty one in the earth” (Genesis 10:9). Evidently Nimrod gained his reputation literally as “a mighty hunter before the Lord,” but the phrase in Hebrew is also given a religious connotation. In other words, he was an individual of incredible influence over the hearts and minds of people. His legacy was his ability to persuade the masses to build a culture where God was not a part of the equation – a society that had ruled God out of its thinking.

The Jerusalem Targum has stated:

“He was powerful in hunting and in wickedness before the Lord, for he was a hunter of the sons of men, and […]

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